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Kirkwood home store one of many facing pipe burst flooding

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KIRKWOOD, Mo. – Managers at a Kirkwood small business began their Thursday morning by closing up and cleaning their store.

Due to a frozen pipe burst, water leaked onto the floor at RF Home Co.

“When I came in around 8:30 (a.m.) there was water everywhere, bubbling up out of the floor as (the water) was trying to make its way into all the cracks,” Kati Goggin, project manager at RF Home Co., said. “We kind of followed the trail and found it…by the pipes that bring the water in, we think to the sprinkler system.”

Employees of the locally owned home goods store immediately got to work cleaning up all the water.

“We went and got the largest shop (vacuum) that Lowes would sell,” Goggin said. “It was filling up in like 30 seconds… we were actually pretty far into the cleanup process by the time the remediators came.”

By midday, most of the water was taken care of, and associates were in the process of putting furniture back in place.  

Social media posts on Facebook and Instagram let customers know that the store would be closed for the day while they awaited industrial fans. 

“There are 40 small businesses within our business, so we kind of really like to foster that community,” Melissa Villadiego, store manager at RF Home Co., said. “When they heard what happened… they came and said, ‘Alright, do you need help? We can help clean up. Do you need a shop (vacuum), do you need manpower?’” 

Online purchases were still available on Thursday. The business expects to be open on Friday, just in time for more cold weather.  

“I love that St. Louis just fosters helping each other, (and) so many people just jumped up and said, ‘Do you need help?’” Villadiego said. 

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